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Lustre Christian Lions Roar Their Way To 3rd At State Tournament

Lustre Christian Lions Roar Their  Way To 3rd At State Tournament Lustre Christian Lions Roar Their  Way To 3rd At State Tournament

They didn’t bring home the trophy they were wishing to but the Lustre Christian Lions boys’ basketball team did indeed bring home a trophy, the one with third place printed on it, which is much to be proud of.

The Lions posted a 3-1 record at the 74th annual Class C Boys’ State Tournament held at Montana Expo Park/Pacific Steel & Recycling Four Seasons Arena in Great Falls over the weekend. They won their opener on Wednesday, March 6, then lost to always-tough and at-the-time 2-time defending state champ Manhattan Christian Eagles in Thursday’s semifinal. Following were wins over Plentywood on Friday and Harlowton-Ryegate Saturday to earn a trophy the vast majority of teams in all four classifications across Big Sky Country would love to place in their school’s trophy case.

In only its second-ever appearance in the State C boys’ gathering—they placed sixth a year ago in Billings—this season’s Lions roared when it mattered the most, which was on the final two days of the 8-team get-together.

Lustre Christian was in the Wednesday, March 6, opener of the entire event, which also included the 47th annual Class C Girls’ State Tournament starting on Thursday.

The Lions faced the Melstone Broncs, who came off a South C challenge-game victory Monday night in Miles City against the Garfield County (Jordan) Mustangs.

Lustre Christian led 24-18 at halftime and 41-30 through three quarters but the Broncs closed the gap within two points in the fourth frame. In the end, however, the Lions pulled away for a 51-44 win, qualify for the program's firstever State C semifinal appearance.

The victory led to a Thursday night semifinal matchup with always-tough Manhattan Christian, which, as noted, was seeking its third straight state championship.

The Lions were off to a fine start by posting a 20-14 advantage by the conclusion of the first quarter but failed to score in the second, making for a 2420 lead by the Eagles.

The Lustre boys closed within 34-33 by the end of the third but were outscored 14-9 in the fourth producing a 48-42 loss.

Now in the loser-out bracket, the Lions were pitted against Plentywood in a Friday ...